Finding the light in darkness; suicide prevention walk


URBANA, Ill. (WCIA) – The World Health Organization said, every year more than 700,000 people die by suicide. In the United States, the CDC said there is 1 death every 11 minutes. That’s why one group on the U of I campus wanted to make sure people know they are not alone.

“No matter if you feel like you’re in the most hopeless spot, a lot of people have felt that. And every single person’s story is different, but at the end of the day, everyone’s story should be the same. That we’re continuing, and we’re going on,” Gracie Habermeier, one organizer, said.

Dozens of students, faculty, staff, and people in the community gathered on campus to raise awareness for suicide prevention, to provide resources for those who might be struggling, and to break stigmas that surround mental health.

“Talk to your friends, talk to your family. You should never feel like it’s a burden you have to carry alone, because so many people can relate to you and be able to make you feel better about what you’re going through when you can lean on others,” Grace Heiberger, an organizer, said.

They all walked over a mile around campus, following a path lit with candles. Keeping with the theme, “Finding the Light in the Darkness“.

“No matter where you feel like you are in your life, if you feel like you’ve explored every single option, you haven’t. So, put that semi colon on and you’re going to keep going, and we’re all here for you,” Habermeier said.

“No matter how dark of a time you’re going through, there will be light out there. So, just keep going push through,” Heiberger said.

If you or someone you know needs help, there are many resources out there.

You can always call the national suicide prevention life line. That number is 800-273-8255.

Rosecrance:  THE CRISIS LINE: 24-hour suicide prevention and crisis hotline for the Champaign County area  217/359-4141, or text 741741

The Pavilion Behavioral Health System: Free confidential mental health assessments, 24/7 at The Pavilion, 809 W. Church Street, Champaign, Il 61820. 217/373-1700, or 800/373-1700.

You can find a list of resources on the U of I campus, here.

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